Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Pre-season Waterfowl Sale now through September

Check out our pre-season fall waterfowl sale that runs through August and September.  Shop online at for great deals and tons of FREE SHIPPING!  Come in store for even better deals! To see more videos subscribe to our channel and always shop at

Monday, April 11, 2016

High School Bass Fishing Season is Here!

With 262 High Schools participating, Illinois is about to kick off the 8th season of IHSA sanctioned bass fishing.    Friday, May 6th at 22 location all across the state sectional tournaments will be held with the top 3 boats qualifying for the state tournament to be held at Carlyle Lake on May 20-21.

Assignments have been made and most of the central Illinois schools are as follows:

Banner Marsh Sectional 

Carthage (Illini West)
Glasford (Illini Bluffs)
Oneida (ROWVA)
Rushville (R.-Industry)
Sciota (West Prairie)

Evergreen Lake Sectional

Bartonville (Limestone)
East Peoria
Mackinaw (Deer Creek-M.)
Peoria (H.S.)
Peoria (Notre Dame)
Peoria (P. Christian)
Peoria Heights

Lake Bloomington Sectional

Bloomington (Central Catholic)
Bloomington (H.S.)
El Paso (E.P.-Gridley)
Hartsburg (H.-Emden) [Coop]
Minonk (Fieldcrest)
Normal (Community West)
Normal (Community)
Varna (Midland)

Presleys Outdoors would like to wish good luck to all the teams and thanks all the volunteers and coaches for the time spent to get so many kids involved in the outdoors.
For more information click here

 Maryville Father McGivney Catholic High School the 2015 IHSA State bass fishing champions.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Monday Night Tournaments - Classic

The Presleys Outdoors Monday Night Tournament Classic was held March 20th at Banner Marsh. There was 44 fish weighed in at a total of 185.30lbs!

1st Place: Adam Jaegle & Tim McCoy - 28.60lbs (6 fish)
2nd Place: Mitch Webber & Dan Kmeer - 25.15lbs (6 fish)
3rd Place: Tim Gawitz & Todd Nelms - 22.35lbs (5 fish)
Big Bass: Tim Gawitz & Todd Nelms - 6.40lbs

If you're interested in fishing our Monday Night Tournaments you can sign up at the store. For more information check out the schedule below.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Gone are the Fields of Gold

Over the past 10 years, waterfowl migration patterns have drastically changed in the Mississippi flyway.  Gone are the days of huge flocks of mallards consistently swarming corn fields in November, and piles of giant Canada geese in late December and January are also dwindling.   History has a tendency to repeat itself.  Southern Illinois used to bill itself as “the goose hunting capital of the world,” but the majority of birds are gone.  Duck migrations have changed as much, if not more, as geese along with the species’ populations.  If it wasn’t for green wing teal counts growing to the highest they have ever been, many areas wouldn’t have had many ducks to shoot the first half of the season.  

There are many theories among the hunting community as for why these changes are occurring.  Global warming, flooding, and agricultural practices tend to be at the forefront of discussions.  Harsh winter conditions seem to be showing up later and later each year and staying frozen for a shorter amount of time.  For me one of the biggest changes from 20 years ago is the standard of Fall tilling.  These agricultural practices have dramatically changed the landscapes of the Midwest from golden fields of corn stubble to freshly turned black dirt concealing the even smaller amounts of waste grains.  Pair these things with a few unfortunately timed late Spring floods that seem to be occurring more and more often in the river valleys and feed has become beyond scarce.  

For states like Illinois, Iowa, and Missouri, the changes just keep coming.  According to the IDNR, the numbers from the Upper/LowerIllinois River Waterfowl Aerial Surveys indicate major changes from 2009 to 2015.  Just look at the numbers.  Canada Geese in Dec. 2009 reported a count of 34,600 in the Upper/Lower Illinois River Valley with 10 year average of 16,835.  Just six years later in Dec. 2015, the survey reported 4,200 with a 10 year average of 23,600.   Now I know that weather has a lot to do with Canada Geese migrations, but very few will argue that the overall migration patterns have changed and hunters just do not see the same concentrations of birds in the past six years. 

One of the more interesting changes in migration patterns are the amount of White Front Geese or better known as Specklebellies (or "Specs" for short).  These birds have moved into the Illinois River Valley the past 10 years and starting to winter here in growing numbers.  Again from the surveys, Specs’ 2009 peak migration numbers were under 1,500 with a peak 10 year average under 2,000 birds.  In 2015 peak was just shy of 12,000 and the 10 year average was up to over 5,000.   One thing is for sure and that is the past six years hunters are not only seeing more Specs but starting to focus on this weary but very tasty bird.  

Snow Geese migrations have been one of the most noticeable changes in the Mississippi flyway due to the huge concentrations in the Spring flights North.  Warm March winds fill the skies with Snow Geese pushing back to the crowded breeding grounds of Canada.  With the Snow Geese population explosion becoming an issue on breeding ground habitat, the US Fish and Wildlife Service started the Spring conservation order snow goose season about 15 years ago.  According to the numbers from the Upper/Lower Illinois River Valley in Dec. 2009, zero birds were reported with a 10 year average of about 1,000.  Now in Dec. 2015 over 26,000 birds were counted with a 10 year average of about 4,000 and rising.   In the Spring season, large refuges, like Emiquon Preserve near Havana, Il, will hold 100,000 or more Snow Geese at a time.  This also creates new hunting opportunities and an extended waterfowl hunting season.  

For me, all of this change only brings excitement for the upcoming seasons to learn how to adapt to these changes, try new things, and focus on early season small ducks, late season Specs, and Spring Snows.  Sure there will be years with no major Spring floods for good food growth, a wet Fall to reduce some tilling, and cold North winds with snow in early December to push the birds down, but you as a hunter will have to change and learn new tactics to consistently harvest birds.   

Friday, February 19, 2016

Illinois Spring Turkey Season

Wild turkeys were abundant in Illinois prior to European settlement. During the 1800s, unregulated hunting and the extensive clearing of forests were the beginning of the decline of the species. The state legislature closed the state to wild turkey hunting in 1903, in an effort to preserve the remaining populations. It was too little too late, and by 1910 wild turkeys had been eliminated from Illinois.

Remaining forests and woodlands in the southern and western part of Illinois that were too rough for agriculture gave hope for turkey reintroduction in our state. Beginning in 1959, wild-trapped turkeys were obtained from other states to begin our stocking efforts. From the 1970s through the year 2003, Illinois trapped wild turkeys from areas where they were thriving and transplanted them to suitable habitat that had not yet been re-colonized.

Illinois now has wild turkeys throughout the state where habitat is suitable. Harvests by hunters are now reaching their peak numbers, and habitat improvement projects are underway to continue to insure the long term survival of this proud symbol of Illinois forests and woodlands. The remarkable return of the wild turkey in Illinois during these last 50 years has been accompanied by renewed interest in this incredible bird. Each year new turkey hunters enter the woodlands and fields with hope of bagging one of the most prized North American game birds. Veteran hunters continue to participate in the challenge and tradition of turkey hunting while introducing new hunters to this exciting recreational opportunity.


  • 1st Season - April 11 - April 15
  • 2nd Season - April 16 - April 21
  • 3rd Season - April 22 - April 27
  • 4th Season - April 28 - May 4
  • 5th Season - May 5 - May 12


  • 1st Season - April 4 - April 8
  • 2nd Season - April 9 - April 14
  • 3rd Season - April 15 - April 20
  • 4th Season - April 21 - April 27
  • 5th Season - April 28 - May 5


  • Northern Zone - April 2 & April 3
  • Southern Zone - March 26 & March 27

NEW Avain X LCD Laydown Hen Turkey Decoy

Avian X has expanded the turkey decoy line up with an amazing ultra-realistic laydown hen. They have spent countless hours designing and developing the ultimate line of turkey decoys.  The new design incorporate the highest quality feather detail ever created in the decoy world and has refined the true-to-life paint scheme to match the natural reflective feathers of a real hen.

Avian-X Turkey decoys are designed for the ultimate in turkey attraction, while still being hunter friendly. The design in every pose is not just your average look-a-like. From the detailed feather lines and feather positions, to the correct, relaxed wing position with each body pose and head position, Avian-X are designed to be completely collapsible with an advanced dura-rubber material, and come with a drawstring carrying bag. The body, head and wing positions of the Laydown Hen simulate the true breeding position of a hen turkey. She is squatting for the mating ritual and displaying to incoming gobblers that she is 100% receptive. Along with the breeding ritual, this pose can double for those great mid-morning set-ups and simulating a dusting hen. The Laydown Hen is just another way to simulate the most realistic poses and tell the whole story in your turkey decoys.

These are currently in stock, but won't last long at Presleys Outdoors  Shop online or come in the store to see the full line up of Avain X turkey decoys along with all your turkey hunting needs.

Cost effective conceal and carry

With more and more people obtaining their conceal and carry permit for personal protection.  Pocket-size handguns have become one of the hottest selling guns on the market today.  No matter what your preference of manufacture or caliber, cost often times becomes the final decision maker.  This is why I wanted to highlight a small gun that fit this need and will not break the bank.  Ruger firearms have been manufacturing American-made quality guns for over 65 years.  The Ruger LCP .380 has been around for about 8 years and offers a 6 + 1 capacity and weighs in just under 10 ounces with a 2.75 inch barrel length.  This gun has seen some updates around 2013 and the most noticeable feature is an improved smooth trigger pull around 7 1/2 pounds.   This gun is accurate reliable and extremely concealable.  It is currently being offered at Presleys Outdoors for a sale price that can't be be of $219.99 blued.  I would encourage you to go to your local firearms dealer and put an LCP in your hand and compare it to other small pistols and then look at the price tag.  I think you will find the LCP to be the most bang for your buck and a great way to enter the conceal and carry market.